Thursday, March 31, 2016

the pirate nun: why the devil hates a good sense of humor

We lost a wonderful woman this week. Mother Angelica went on to her reward. And Lewis talks (in A Year with C.S. Lewis) about having a good sense of humor in today's readings. Coincidence? I think not.

Why is having a good sense of humor so detestable to our enemy? Well, many reasons. But before we get to them, it's illustrative to note how often we find a good sense of humor among the saints. St Lawrence, the patron saint of comedians, said "Turn me over, I'm done on this side" as he was being burned alive. All of the holy people of note are known for their humor, from Mother Teresa to Pope John Paul II to the man who writes our devotional, C.S. Lewis.

One reason this is good for us is because it, as Lewis points out, puts things in perspective. Having a good laugh at something helps us to see it in context, and it doesn't seem so huge or bad that way. The phrase "We'll laugh about this later" gives us this idea.

Another thing it does is it helps us not to take ourselves too seriously. Lewis talks about that, too. He says that when we are filled with self-contempt, that often turns into contempt for others. The reverse is true, too, by the way. That's why love is so important, or one reason anyway. If you are constantly ridiculing and mocking other people, then when you find yourself doing something similar, you are left in a very difficult place of either hating yourself or becoming a hypocrite. If, on the other hand, we learn to love others, then that allows us to love ourselves when we find ourselves doing something like them.

Finally, a good sense of humor allows us to enjoy our lives. God gave us humor, and we find many examples of it in the Bible. He wants us to take joy in the lives He has given us. He demands that we rest every week, that we take part in festivals, and has given us delicious food and enjoyable sex as things that we can't avoid if we want to keep living. He makes enjoying our lives inevitable, no matter how hard we might try to avoid it. And we do try!

God, thank You for humor, and for making our lives full of joy.


Marcia Tapp said...

Gentle chuckles are contagious

julie reedy said...

Now that was funny!